CDC: Flu vaccine 23 percent effective

Jessie Bekker

Well into this year’s flu season, the Center for Disease Control announced last week that the vaccine is only 23 percent effective, according to the Washington Post.

In past years, the vaccine has typically been about 60 percent effective, the University of Minnesota’s Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy reported.

The CDC’s findings offer evidence that the low vaccine effectiveness may be due to a discrepancy between the H3N2 virus and the components of the H3N2 vaccine, CIDRAP reported.

The flu season has earned the title of “moderately severe” as a result, according to the Washington Post.

Out of 2,321 people tested by the CDC, the vaccine was effective in only 26 percent of children between 6 months and 17 years old. The vaccine was effective in about 12 percent of adults ranging 18 to 49 and 14 percent in adults 50 and older, CIDRAP reported.

CDC officials still encourage the public to get vaccinated, despite the low effectiveness rate, the Washington Post reported.

“Anything we can do to prevent the flu is important,” Edward Belongia, MD, director of the Epidemiology Research Center at the Marshfield Clinic Research Foundation in Wisconsin and co-author of the report told CIDRAP.